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School food project launched to promote Norfolk potatoes

PUBLISHED: 11:06 22 June 2013

A prize competition to encourage school food projects will be launched on Monday by award-winning Norfolk farm manager William Gribbon with a £2,000 prize fund.

The Norfolk Peer Grow and Cook Awards will encourage teachers and college staff from nursery to higher education to enter a school agricultural or horticultural project or support a school cookery project. Two £1,000 prizes will be awarded.

Open to all learning providers, the entry must be submitted by a head teacher, supported by work from students to support the application. An online poll will be held alongside a panel of judges including chef Galton Blackiston, of Morston Hall, and Mr Gribbon, of Heygates Farm, Swaffham.

The awards, open to all nurseries, schools and colleges in East Anglia, are named after the potato variety, grown by Heygates Farms. It aims to help children learn how about fresh food and how it is grown and then cooked.

When an entry has been accepted, voting can start. The top 15 projects will then move to the next forward to be judged. The top entries from each category will be invited to the farm to make a final presentation.

The awards coincide with Tesco’s decision to stock Norfolk Peer potatoes across East Anglia. Simon Dryell, senior buying manager of Tesco’s local sourcing team, said: “More now than ever consumers are wanting to see more local products in our stores, 73pc of shoppers in our local regions say they are buying local products every time / often when they visit the supermarket for a main shop.”

Enter online. Entries open on Monday and close on September 30. Details – www.GrowAndCookAwards.co.uk.

■ Mr Gribbon will be holding a “meet the grower” event on Friday, June 28 from 10am at the Dereham Extra, and cooking the locally-grown potatoes.

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